September 1, 2011
George hit this one out of the park. He articulates everything about the wolf hunts that is vile and offensive. He shoots down the ridiculous reasons given for “managing/killing wolves”, specifically the two biggest lies, that wolves are destroying game herds and wolves impact ranching in any significant way.
How many times does it have to be repeated that elk are doing just fine in all the wolf states? Our wild places are being managed like giant game farms, keeping ungulate numbers high and predator numbers low, in a misguided effort to accommodate hunters, while ignoring the science which supports the positive influence apex predators have on ecosystem health.
Idaho: 101, 000
Wyoming: 105, 000
Idaho: 107, 000
Does that look like elk are struggling or declining in the Northern Rockies? NO!! And who is speaking out for wildlife watchers? Where is the balance? What is fair about reducing Idaho wolf numbers to 150 animals, while accommodating 103,000 elk?
The other rap against wolves is livestock losses. Well I suggest you read the USFWS annual report, which includes wolf predation numbers. Cattle and sheep losses to wolves in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming are so small it’s almost laughable to say wolves are impacting ranching in any significant way, yet ranchers are treated like victims. They have a destructive agency called Animal Damage Control (WS), at their disposal. The worst idea ever was to pay ranchers for livestock losses to wolves. Do they get paid for losses to other predators, lightening, reproductive issues or disease? Absolutely not. And why should they? It’s their business and their risk.
Please share George’s article with everyone you know. It should be required reading, especially for the wolf hating crowd.
Wolf Hunts Morally Corrupt
By George Wuerthner, 8-31-11
The resumption of wolf-hunts in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming illustrates why citizens must continue to oppose such unnecessary and senseless slaughters.
The wolf-hunts are predicated upon morally corrupt and inaccurate assumptions about wolf behavior and impacts that is not supported by recent scientific research. State wildlife agencies pander to the lowest common denominator in the hunting community—men who need to booster their own self esteem and release misdirected anger by killing.
Wolf-hunts, as Montana Fish and Game Commission Chairman Bob Ream noted at a public hearing, are in part to relieve hunters’ frustrations—frustration based on inaccurate information, flawed assumptions, and just plain old myths and fears about predators and their role in the world.
Maybe relieving hunter frustration is a good enough justification for wolf-hunts to many people. However, in my view permitting hunts to go forwards without even registering opposition is to acquiesce to ignorance, hatred, and the worse in human motivations. Thankfully a few environmental groups, most notably the Center for Biological Diversity, Wildearth Guardians, Alliance for Wild Rockies and Western Watersheds had the courage and gumption to stand up to ignorance and hatred.
Photo: Courtesy Flickr Commons
Posted in: Wolf Wars
Tags: George Wuerthner, Wolf Hunts, Idaho, Montana, wolf persecution, Wyoming, morally corrupt wolf hunts, Wuerthner Environment
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